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Phuket’s new top cop determined to protect island’s bottom line: tourists



PHUKET: Phuket’s new top cop took up his position yesterday, full of strategies to make the island a safer and happier place.

Maj Gen Patchara Boonyasit, previously the commander of the Nakhon Sri Thammarat Provincial Police, paid his respects to Phuket’s illustrious history and cultural heritage by visiting the Baan Muang Mai stone and the Heroines’ Monument, before checking in at Phuket Provincial Police headquarters in Phuket Town.

Speaking to the Phuket Gazette, Gen Patchara said that he was looking to gain tourists’ trust with improved island safety, and hoped to beef up the police volunteer force.

“I plan to provide the island with more tourist police stations, and will be calling on residents to volunteer. All stations should have seven volunteers to each police officer,” he said.

Gen Patchara noted that he was confident that he could manage public safety in Phuket and keep tourists interested in visiting the island.

“I am not worried about working in Phuket. We will support those who do good and arrest those that break the law,” he said.

“Phuket is special because we have so many tourists coming from all over the world. We welcome them, and if we do our job right, they – and hopefully their friends and families – will come back again.

“This is what we want.”

Gen Patchara also impressed upon the Gazette the importance of CCTV.

“Officers need to take advantage of CCTV on the island. But first, we must determine which ones are working and which need to be fixed,” he said.

“However, police cannot do it alone; we also need co-operation from island residents. If someone has private CCTV, they should turn it toward the road, so officers can make use of it if necessary.”

Lastly, Gen Patchara stressed the need to keep police officers happy.

“When we are satisfied at work, we are able to do our job well. It is important that police are happy so that they are polite and positive when they help people,” he said.

“People are the heart of a community, and police are here to support them and make sure that they are safe and content.”

— Kritsada Mueanhawong


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